The Mayan Cosmology involves three spheres: the heavens, the terrestrial world  and the underworld (Xibalba).

There are 13 layers to the heavens and nine below the ceiba tree connect the underworlds to the terrestrial and the heavens.

The importance of the central tree is found in other regional cosmologies, including the Olmec, Tolecs and Aztecs.


Four Chacs were present to suspend the the various layers representing the four corners of the earth or four trees as seen in many rituals (like the puberty ceremony) and various manifestations of the gods. A fifth tree is represented in the centre and this is the pathway from the under to over worlds and the ultimate creator (Hunab Ku).

Itzamna, a cross-eyed lizard like god who is toothless and often has a beard ) is the descendent of the creator and said to be the partner of Ixchel (the goddess of the moon, pregnancy, floods and weaving ) and together they gave birth to all of the other gods (including the Jaguar (Balam) and the Maize god , rain-god, sun-god, war god and medicinal god)...

There are gods that correspond to the various layers of the upper and lower worlds as well as many for the natural world around them.

Each god is manifest in either positive or negative forms where they may bring good or ill fortune, for exam the rain god can bring moisture for the maize and other crops but can also bring downpours, flooding and destruction.